(a) It is the policy of the United States to standardize equipment, including weapons systems, ammunition, and fuel, procured for the use of the armed forces of the United States stationed in Europe under the North Atlantic Treaty or at least to make that equipment interoperable with equipment of other members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. To carry out this policy, the Secretary of Defense shall–
(1) assess the costs and possible loss of nonnuclear combat effectiveness of the military forces of the members of the Organization caused by the failure of the members to standardize equipment;
(2) maintain a list of actions to be taken, including an evaluation of the priority and effect of the action, to standardize equipment that may improve the overall nonnuclear defense capability of the Organization or save resources for the Organization; and
(3) initiate and carry out, to the maximum extent feasible, procurement procedures to acquire standardized or interoperable equipment, considering the cost, function, quality, and availability of the equipment.
(b) Progress in realizing the objectives of standardization and interoperability would be enhanced by expanded inter-Allied procurement of arms and equipment within the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Expanded inter-Allied procurement would be made easier by greater reliance on licensing and coproduction cooperative agreements among the signatories of the North Atlantic Treaty. If constructed to preserve the efficiencies associated with economies of scale, the agreements could minimize potential economic hardship to parties to the agreements and increase the survivability, in time of war, of the North Atlantic Alliance’s armaments production base by dispersing manufacturing facilities. In conjunction with other members of the Organization and to the maximum extent feasible, the Secretary shall–
(1) identify areas in which those cooperative agreements may be made with members of the Alliance; and
(2) negotiate those agreements.
(c)(1) It is the sense of Congress that weapons systems being developed wholly or primarily for employment in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization theater should conform to a common Organization requirement in order to proceed toward joint doctrine and planning and to facilitate maximum feasible standardization and interoperability of equipment, and that a common Organization requirement should be understood to include a common definition of the military threat to the members of the Organization.
(2) It is further the sense of Congress that standardization of weapons and equipment within the Organization on the basis of a “two-way street” concept of cooperation in defense procurement between Europe and North America can only work in a realistic sense if the European nations operate on a united and collective basis. Therefore, the governments of Europe are encouraged to accelerate their present efforts to achieve European armaments collaboration among all European members of the Organization.
[(d) Repealed. Pub. L. 108-136, div. A, title X, §1031(a)(22), Nov. 24, 2003, 117 Stat. 1598.]
(e) If the Secretary decides that procurement of equipment manufactured outside the United States is necessary to carry out the policy of subsection (a), the Secretary may determine under section 8302 of title 41 that acquiring that equipment manufactured in the United States is inconsistent with the public interest.
(f) The Secretary shall submit the results of each assessment and evaluation made under subsection (a)(1) and (2) to the appropriate North Atlantic Treaty Organization body to become an integral part of the overall Organization review of force goals and development of force plans.